Sierra de Cardeña y Montoro

Sierra de Cardeña y Montoro
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When, from the Guadalquivir Valley travellers face the lands of the Sierra de Cardeña y Montoro, they come across a steep step that, once passed, stretches the horizon along the meadow of Pedroche in a display of peace and serenity.

This natural space, in the north-eastern corner of Cordoba, is an obligatory stop between the Guadalquivir Valley and Castile, until recently, just over a century ago, a continuous forest dotted with inns and taverns. During the 19th century, to expand land for cultivation, the mountains close was transformed it into a young meadow, an extension of its neighbour Los Pedroches, where Iberian pigs and cattle of native stockfarms graze (retinta and avileña breeds).

Whereas in the meadow predominate large bowls of extended shapes or “whalebacks”, as those in the villages of Azuel and Venta del Charco, at the ends of the field, the Yeguas and Arenoso Rivers have created a mountainous, abrupt rim, where its waters are framed creating spectacular landscapes.

Fauna and flora

In general, the vegetation that dominates is comprised of a mixed forest of oak, cork and, when the humidity is greater, gall oak and a unique Pyrenean oak. Along the edges of the central meadow, where the topography becomes more complex, the sun and shade condition the growing vegetation: kermes oaks, thickets and olive trees give way to shaded areas of strawberry, durillos heather and cornicabra. Red deer and fallow deer graze here under the watchful gaze of a good list of birds of prey - golden and imperial eagle, black vulture and griffon vulture-, and stork, both common and black. In the more enclosed mountains, alongside wild boars, appear other species of interest such as lynx, badgers, Egyptian mongoose, genet and eagle owl. On the south is an old olive grove, now ecological, which provides shelter to Segureña sheep when migrating and leads along its ascent to a pine forest that colonises the definitive transition to the meadow, a place thriving with the presence of Iberian magpies, Eurasian magpies and the great spotted cuckoo. The two main rivers in the nature park have an interesting population of otter that shares its habitat with white-throated dipper, kingfisher and the Mediterranean turtle. Chapter of interest is the presence of wild mushrooms, because together with the cap mushrooms are other varieties as the wood blewit, gallipierno and desert truffles; although the true mycological protagonist of the nature park is the rockrose pheasantback mushroom.
Sierra de Cardeña y Montoro
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Points of interest

Coordinates not available

Services and infrastructure

  • Tourist Office
Target audiences
Seniors, young people, For families, Couples, I travel alone, Friends, Lgbti
Sports, Culture, Nature, Gastronomy, Leisure and fun
Type of activity
Mountain biking, Hot air ballooning, Multi-adventure activities, Kayaking, Hiking, Horse riding, Off-road vehicles, Climbing, Orienteering
Quality brands
ISO 14001:2004, European Charter for Sustainable Tourism
Environmental units
Sierra Morena Continental mountain
Statement date
28 / 07 / 1989
Area (m2)